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For rail travelers, safety a concern but not a focus

(The following article by Ray Hackett was posted on the Norwich Bulletin website on September 10.)

NEW LONDON -- Rachel Rudansky took a ferry from Long Island to New London Thursday, where she boarded the 9:25 a.m. Amtrak train for Boston.

She admits it is difficult to avoid thinking about what could happen, but she isn't ready yet to alter her life based on "what if..."

"I appreciate the fact that they don't have the same level of security at airports at the train stations," she said, sipping tea as she pulled her luggage behind her heading toward the train platform. "It makes you feel hopeful that it's a sign that we might live normally again."

And although few passengers at the train station expressed concern about traveling, all conceded safety is an issue that cannot be completely ignored.

"Anybody with a desire to disrupt routines can do it," said Mike McKay of Uncasville, dropping off a friend heading home to Pennsylvania. "But I haven't changed my travel habits."

"I think if I worry, I'd be worried," said Jay Reddy of New London, as he waited for his train to Philadelphia. "So why bother."

Richard and Patricia Cracknew gathered their luggage on the sidewalk after being dropped off by a friend. The British couple spent the last two weeks visiting with friends in America, using the train to travel from Philadelphia to New London, with stops in Delaware and Baltimore along the way. On Thursday, they were bound for New York City, before boarding a plane Saturday for the return trip to England.

"You can't think about it. You have to go on with your life," Patricia said.

Monday, September 11, 2006

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